Union Station Toronto MassMotion model; Union Station Toronto MassMotion model;

Artificial intelligence and machine learning

Human creativity augmented by the immense power of machines

Human creativity augmented by the immense power of machines

At their heart, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are powerful new analytical technologies that enhance our ability to design and manage the built environment in ways that meet human needs and deliver net zero goals.

As thinkers and makers, mathematics and advanced analysis have always informed our approach to design – from physical tolerances to daylight levels to energy-efficiency and countless other considerations.

So in Arup, we have brought AI/ML into the heart of our work. We have developed our own machine learning and AI-powered tools, for example to chart new pathways to net zero for whole cities, to understand better the lifespan of assets and the causes of failure, or to design complex buildings with new materials and reduced carbon.

Featured project

Designing better flood defences with machine learning

Shanghai’s population has tripled since 1990, leading to growing city flooding and river pollution, made worse by climate change. Our masterplanning team used remote sensing to scan greater Shanghai, and built a machine learning tool to interpret the images and categorise the entire area into 12 categories of flooding protection need. The project demonstrates how human ingenuity and community priorities can be supercharged by the power of machine learning to achieve previously impossible things.

Find out more about our work

The machine learning algorithms we develop tap into the full power of big data and advanced analytics, providing our clients with new options and solutions: the building that can predict when maintenance is needed; the railway system that understands when weather-related landslips are a risk; the water company purification plant that learns how to produce cleaner water using less energy.

AI and ML are exciting and powerful technologies, capable to helping you move in new directions. And you can start small, with a proof of concept built by our team, before scaling up to operationalise the power of AI/ML within your organisation.

Bring the full power of AI into your business

Machine learning and artificial intelligence tools now have the potential to bring significant and practical benefits to the world of the built environment. To do this, our development process has four stages: we listen to your business requirement; we investigate how your business’s disparate data sources could produce new insights and value. Then we create powerful AI/ML-based solutions that provide new insight and options that bring significant value to your work; and we work to ensure these are understood and bring real benefit to your organisation. The most effective investments in AI and ML are always a collaboration between the human, the digital and the physical.


Gain the power to predict

Our team has developed a machine learning tool whose predictive algorithm can extend the lifespan of off-shore wind farm’s foundations – the one irreplaceable component of these systems. Our always updating, cloud-based system uses embedded sensors and accelerometers to understand the foundations’ level of fatigue over time, providing timely insights to operators in this highly regulated market.

Intelligent assets

Run intelligent buildings and assets

Our intelligent building management platform, Arup Neuron, uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to understand the way a building is being used, from occupancy levels to heating, lighting and air conditioning, optimising energy and resource use on its own.

Find out more about Neuron

Net zero challenge

Meet the net zero challenge

Faced with literally millions of potential approaches, we developed a design algorithm for Whole Foods that mimics the process of genetic evolution, selecting the most effective ways to lower their stores’ energy use and meet California’s stringent net zero regulations.

Find out more about our work

Develop new services

Develop valuable new services

From passenger levels to air traffic issues, there are patterns within many aspects of airport operation. We unified Heathrow Airport’s air traffic data into a powerful new tool that helps them learn from these patterns of data, improving their ability to predict passenger volumes across their terminals, and allowing them to better plan ahead.

Next generation, intelligent infrastructure

Much of the today’s world relies on systems only incrementally improved since the first industrial revolution. We believe that machine learning and artificial intelligence can reshape the operation and outcomes across the infrastructure sector – from water and drainage systems to the energy grid and transport networks. AI/ML’s ability to synthesise insights from vast quantities of previously unrecorded data, will lead to greater energy efficiency, better use of resources, the ability to predict everything from the effects of weather to user behaviour.

Find out how we are helping Northern Ireland Water to use machine learning in its water purification systems, leading to optimised operation and greater confidence in drinking water safety.

Watch our webinars: AI in the built environment

Find out how Arup is using machine learning in a range of different but valuable contexts, from façade inspection to enhancing precious biodiversity, in our recent webinars.

Watch our webinars

Contact us

Speak to our team today, to begin turning your organisation’s data into transformative new insights and services.

A child experiencing a city through Urban95 virtual reality A child experiencing a city through Urban95 virtual reality